Day Four – I never thought I’d stay at the most luxurious hotel in the world

Thursday 21 May – Dubai, United Arab Emirates

This morning we checked out of the gorgeous Al Maha Desert Resort, and I was very sad to leave – I’ve absolutely loved everything about this place. I’d love to go back one day and take my partner, as it is something very special that would be best shared with someone you love. The Oryx’ on the other hand, were clearly very pleased to see me go, as while I was being transferred to the lobby by golf buggy, one started to charge at me… I got a huge fright, and the man driving the buggy found it hilarious, I guess it happens regularly. They are certainly not as harmless as the wee gazelles.

Our first stop for the day was the Jumeirah Zabeel Sarah Hotel – this hotel is absolutely beautiful! It is Turkish influenced and is very opulent with lots of beautiful colours used, gorgeous big chandeliers, mosaics etc etc. We did a site inspection here, looking at the lovely restaurants, movie theatre, and a beautiful suite – the Grand Imperial I think it was called..

Chandelier Jumeirah Zabeel Saray

I’ll upload a photo so that you can see how massive the big gold bath is in this room.. craziness. We were treated to a lovely spa treatment each in award winning spa, Talise Ottoman Spa, which is massive at 800sqm and has something like 42 treatment rooms, as well as Turkish Hammams.

After this, we nipped over to another Jumeirah property, called the Jumeirah Madinat, where we had lunch at a famous restaurant called PierChic, which is (as the name suggests) on a pier, looking out to the Burj Al Arab. It’s absolutely beautiful, the food is to die for, and the staff are lovely. The only thing I would change about this is the windows – you can sit with a view out to the water, but there is a panel across the window right where your head is, which means you can’t see the Burj without ducking down. The menu is pricey here, but definitely worth it for what you get, and it is quite a romantic spot. The rest of the group carried on to do a site inspection at the Madinat after this, and one of the reps and I left to go back to Skydive Dubai to pick up my photos from yesterday. Most of them were hilariously unusable (and I will never show another soul), but there were some good ones and although they give you a USB with the video and photos (included in the price of the jump), I decided to get 9 printed to show the rest of the group – this was just 100 Dirham, which I thought was very reasonable. I’ve included some of these for you to see.

From Skydive Dubai, and while we waited for the rest of the group to finish up, we went and checked into Burj Al Arab. This hotel is SEVEN star. It is “The World’s Most Luxurious Hotel”. It is iconic worldwide for it’s very recognisable sail shape. On arrival we were seated on the ground floor, which is not the lobby, but they take your passport at this stage and you are given a cold scented wash cloth (these are heaven, and are offered most hospitality places in Dubai, on arrival)

Spa at the spa

Next we were taken up to our levels (I am level 12) and taken into our rooms – now, I was expecting a small room.. 30sqm at the most, but this is more than a suite.. it’s a duplex. I was absolutely gobsmacked! From the business centre which has a MAC desktop for your use, and a phone that can open your door for you when someone buzzes to get in (oh, and their face will appear on the TV!!), to the golden (real gold) lounge with a gorgeous fruit bowl, free dates (Arabian dates are to die for), the free bottle of wine, and the tablet that controls the curtains, the AC, the TV, etc. There is also a small bathroom off the entrance. THEN there is a gorgeous grand stairway (which just casually also has an amazing chandelier above it).. this leads up to the enormous mosaic’d bathroom, with a huge spa bath, amazing rainforest showerhead, and even your very own 50ml Hermes Eau de Parfum. The last room is the bedroom – a beautiful view out over the water, a massive sitting area and a bed that looks incredibly comfortable (but has a random mirror on the ceiling above it. This room type, which is the lead in room type, goes for about $4000 NZD per night.

This evening we had dinner in one of the hotel’s very iconic restaurants, Al Mahara – it is basically dining in an aquarium.. it’s amazing. The food was beautiful, as you would expect. We then went up to the bar up the top of the hotel (in the bit that juts out the side with beautiful views over the water and the city), but the cheapest drink on the menu was 140 Dirham, which is crazy expensive. One of the most expensive on the menu was 15,000 Dirham. Although we are staying in the most luxurious hotel in the world, we are still on Travel Agent salaries! We turned around and went back out. It was nice to see what it looked like though. I think I’d be more persuaded during daylight, when you can see a bit more.

Once again, I am incredibly heavy eyed after a big day. I’m off to bed! See you tomorrow for my last entry for Dubai. XX

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